Gold Ribbon Banner
Sunday, May 26, 2019

Here is a photograph of four of Mr Hogarth’s “Young Gentlemen” preparing to resume work, painting in the ships name and port of registry on the stern, all identification having been painted over during the war years.

Baron Herries paintingThese are the four apprentices who took part in ‘Operation Crow’ about a year later during the same voyage, as related in my old sailors yarn ‘Stone the Crows” published in the April 2014 issue of Sea Breezes. They are, from left to right; Jimmy Laughland, Harry Kennan (Senior App), Robert Fullarton and Joe McKendrick. The Deck Serang (bosun) Sherazul Huq and one of his men are on deck looking down to see what was going on.

Jimmy, just joined for his first trip, should not have been on an overside stage 20 ft above the water and he certainly should not have been sitting outside of the stage rope. When this photo was taken, a few months after the end of the war, the ship was still painted overall in dirty, matt, grey and now, for the first time, the Baron Herries was to be painted in Hogarth’s colours.

As there were no painters of the proper trade available, we apprentices were given the job of finding where Baron Herries and Ardrossan had been cut into the shell plating then wash the area and paint a black rectangle ready for the lettering. Next day we had to follow the faint chisel marks and line out the letters in white, using a small brush, then filling them in. We considered this to be a nice, clean, interesting job. One which when out of sight we could get on with in our own time. When actually working overside, one of us would be “stand-by” on deck to tend the stage ropes and see that nobody else touched them, to lower the paint pots and any other gear as required and to tell us when it was time to “knock off”. He would have a lifebuoy close at hand ready to throw close to, but not at anyone of us who had the misfortune to fall into the dock. That lifebuoy and the rope ladder going down past the stage to the water were the only, self-organised, safety measures taken.

How did I come to be standing on that stage?

When I was in the City Line office asking to be taken on as a Cadet with no pre-sea training, their Superintendent, rather rudely, requested me to remove myself from his office. On the way out, an aged clerk took me aside. “Laddie” he said with typical Glasgow humour, “Try Hogarths, St Vincent Street. They’ll take you on as long as you are still warm and can stand up” and he was dead right.

At Hogarth’s office nobody asked if I could swim, obviously a useful skill when working overside. In fact they didn’t ask very much at all. No questions about what work I had done or where I lived. They didn’t want to know about my schooling or what games I played. As long as I could pass the Shipping Office medical and eyesight tests and was issued with an Identity Card and a Discharge Book they were “pleased” to offer me a four years apprenticeship in order to keep up their number of apprentices and man their ships. It was a bit like joining the French Foreign Legion. No questions asked about my past, they just wanted to know if I was physically fit to work for them for the next four years.

It was up to me if I was to learn anything during that time towards obtaining a Second Mates Certificate. That was none of their business. With Hogarths, there was no standard working gear. We wore any old clothes that we could find, it was still the days of clothes rationing. As you can see they got rather dirty and, with no laundry facilities onboard, were occasionally scrubbed on a hatch top using hard soap and a bucket of hot water. That didn’t make them very clean but it was the best we could do.

You can also see that the three of us, standing, who had been with Hogarths for some time, are all slim and fit looking. No doubt as a result of our carefully managed shipboard diet and plenty of outdoor exercise. Of the four on the stage, three eventually held F G Masters Certificates, but I was the only one who remained at sea and, in due time, sailed a Master on vessels of the Clan Line fleet.

4 Ewenfield Avenue
Ayr, Scotland, KA7 2QQ

For more letters, see the latest edition of Sea Breezes Magazine
Click on the links below to subscribe

Subscribe Graphic

Latest Issue - Look Inside!

Island Princess

Most Popular

  • Port of London Trade at 10-Year High +

  • Ruminations on Rum +

  • Northlink Celebrates Apprentices +

  • Special Place for Tanker in Port History +

  • US Navy Seeks Faster Ship Delivery +

  • 1
  • 2

Latest Products

Maritime Log

  • South Atlantic Repair Yard Plans +

    BBDC Ship Repair Yard What will be the largest purpose-built shiprepair yard in the South Atlantic Basin is being developed in the state of Read More
  • Move to Enlarge River Terminal +

    Grimsby River Terminal Associated British Ports (ABP) plans to expand its Grimsby River Terminal to enable it to handle the world’s largest car Read More
  • At the Helm of the RNLI +

    Mark Dowie A new Chief Executive has been appointed by the Royal National Lifeboat Institution to succeed Paul Boissier, who has held Read More
  • Keeping the Tyne Clean +

    Clearwater Each year, the Clean Tyne project removes around 400 tonnes of debris from the River Tyne between Blaydon and the Read More
  • First Part of Huge Port Investment Completed +

    Sheerness Port The 20-year Master Plan for boosting trade through the Kent port of Sheerness has reached a significant milestone with the Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

North America

  • Houston Ship Canal Closed After Major Fire +

    Houston Fire The Houston Ship Canal reopened to daylight traffic after being closed for nearly a week due to a serious fire Read More
  • Back Home After Eventful Antarctic Season +

    Polar Star The US Coast Guard icebreaker Polar Star arrived back at her homeport of Seattle, Washington on Mar 11 after an Read More
  • Four More Giant Cranes Arrive from China +

    Zhen Hua 31 Four new Super-Post-Panamax container cranes arrived at Tacoma, Washington, from China in early March, just over a year after the Read More
  • Two Hurt as Lifeboat Falls Overboard +

    USCG Reliance Two crew members of the tanker Chemtrans Nova, 73,870dwt, had to be flown ashore for treatment after the lifeboat they Read More
  • Cutters Seize $466mn of Drugs on Patrols +

    USCG Forward At Port Everglades, Florida, on Feb 5, some 34,780lbs of cocaine with a street value of $466mn was unloaded from Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3


  • Three Main Courses Being Plotted for MOL +

    MOL Triumph The major Japanese shipping line Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) has unveiled a number of new objectives aimed at improving its Read More
  • Cargo Ships for Bass Strait Service +

    Tasmanian Achiever II The first of two 700 teu cargo ship for the Bass Strait route between the Tasmanian port of Burnie and Read More
  • Race to Save Coral Reef After Grounding +

    Solomon Trader A major anti-pollution operation was launched in the Solomon Islands after the bulk carrier Solomon Trader, 73,592dwt, with a cargo Read More
  • Special Place for Tanker in Port History +

    Pro Alliance The largest fuel tanker in the 220 year history of the Australian port of Newcastle, NSW, arrived on Mar 18 Read More
  • Data Recorder Recovered From Ore Carrier Wreck +

    Seabed Constructor The Stellar Daisy, owned by Polaris Shipping, of South Korea, was carrying a cargo of iron ore from Brazil to Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

Naval Focus

  • US Navy Orders Flight II Landing Platform Dock +

    LDP30 American News The contract for the construction of LPD30, the first Flight II Landing Platform Dock of the San Antonio Read More
  • US Navy Seeks Faster Ship Delivery +

    FFGX Rendering American News The future frigate program for the US Navy is getting fully underway and some idea of the urgency Read More
  • HMS “Dragon” in £75 Million Narcotics Seizure +

    HMS Dragon British News Whilst on patrol in the Gulf, the Type 45 destroyer HMS Dragon seized and destroyed ten tonnes of Read More
  • New Generation of Enterprise Confirmed +

    USS Enterprise American News On 31 January, the US Department of Defense announced the awarding of a block buy contract with Huntington Read More
  • Brazil to Take Over HMS Clyde +

    HMS Clyde British News It has been announced by the Brazilian Government in early December that the Falklands Patrol ship HMS Clyde Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

Ferry World

  • Further Delay for LNG Powered Glen Sannox +

    Glen Sannox The drama surrounding the much delayed new ferries for Caledonian MacBrayne continues to rumble on with the latest, not unsurprising, Read More
  • Favourite Claymore +

    Claymore A poster of Llandudno pier prompted a memory from ex Calmac chief engineer Charlie McCurdy as he took another trip Read More
  • Baltic Battery Power +

    Aurora Scandinavian and Baltic operators seem to be leading the way in reducing ferry reliance on fossil fuels. Read More
  • Electric Solutions +

    Polarkunsult Ferry A new ferry will replace the 1992-built MF Herjólfur to the Westmann Islands and will be in line with Iceland’s Read More
  • Variety of New Builds +

    Red Kestrel I am gratified to hear at Cammell Lairds and Red Funnel have a particularly good record in ordering from UK Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

Sail Review/Coastal Comment

  • Thames Tributary Barges +

    Lady of the Lea Most of the rivers flowing into the Thames had their own barge type. Read More
  • Dry Rot and Dry Dock +

    HMS Victory For some time Victory, the 110gun ship of the line, has had trouble with dry rot and is in danger Read More
  • Everards Eulogy +

    Greenhithe Scottish maritime interests particularly may mourn the loss of Geo Gibson. Read More
  • Welsh Port Gentrification +

    Penarth In the Victorian era, there were many coastal places where craft worked off open beaches. Read More
  • Sussex Sterns +

    Edward and Mary and Valiant In the Victorian era, there were many coastal places where craft worked off open beaches. Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

From the Lookout

  • Red Funnel’s New Ferry Arrives +

    Red Kestrel Red Kestrel, the newest addition to Red Funnel’s fleet, arrived at her new home in Southampton on 18 April. Read More
  • Keeping an Eye on the Weather +

    Royal Charter storm I was intrigued to read recently about the career of Vice-Admiral Robert FitzRoy (1805-65). Read More
  • Port of London Trade at 10-Year High +

    DP World London Gateway Trade through the Port of London reached 53.2 million tonnes last year, a level last seen over a decade ago. Read More
  • Northlink Celebrates Apprentices +

    Paul Wheelhouse NorthLink Serco Northlink Ferries has been commended by the Minister for Energy, Connectivity and the Islands, Paul Wheelhouse, for developing young Read More
  • An Auction with no Buyer +

    Falls of Clyde I was reading recently about the unsuccessful auction to find a buyer for the Falls of Clyde, the last remaining Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

Cruise News/Superyacht News

  • Two Distinctive Ships Headed for Chinese Market +

    Spectrum of the Seas and Costa Venezia The Spectrum of the Seas (169,379 GT), Royal Caribbean International’s first ship in the Quantum Ultra Class, embarked on the Read More
  • Seadream Yacht Club to Build New Ship +

    SeaDream Innovation For over fifteen years, the SeaDream Yacht Club has operated two yachtlike ships, on 7 to 15-day voyages. Read More
  • Tradition Plays Its Part +

    Prana by Atzaro If ever proof was needed that traditionally built craft can still play a part in the luxury charter market in Read More
  • MV "Magellan Explorer" +

    MV Yet another new and modern expedition vessel custom built for Antarctic air-cruises will make her debut in 2019. Read More
  • The Saga Continues +

    Saga Discovery Saga Adventure SAGA Cruises has announced it is taking up an option for it’s second new ship to be built at the Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

Ships, Ports and Places

San Juan

A Truly Different Shipyard

The entrance to the port of Pasaia on the Spanish coast of Biscay is one of Europe’s most picturesque. At Read More

Victoria High and Dry

Five-hundred years ago, Ferdinand Magellan sailed out of Seville, Spain, on one of the most memorable discovery voyages ever made, Read More
  • 1
  • 2

Companies, Events and Other Features

SS Eastern (2)

MT Arthur Foss

“The last vessel to escape Wake Island before Japanese forces captured the island” Read More
SS Eastern (2)

Rescue of Crew Member From Tanker Avanti

Captain A J Murdoch served with Eastern & Australian Steamship Company until he retired in 1982. Hailing from Melbourne, during Read More
  • 1
  • 2